Parliament from above


Ruth FoxRuth FoxDirector and Head of Research

Ruth is responsible for the strategic direction and performance of the Society and leads its research programme. She has appeared before more than a dozen parliamentary select committees and inquiries, and regularly contributes to a wide range of current affairs programmes on radio and television, commentating on parliamentary process and political reform. In 2012 she served as adviser to the independent Commission on Political and Democratic Reform in Gibraltar, and in 2013 as an independent member of the Northern Ireland Assembly’s Committee Review Group. Prior to joining the Society in 2008 she was head of research and communications for a Labour MP and Minister and ran his general election campaigns in 2001 and 2005 in a key marginal constituency. In 2004 she worked for Senator John Kerry’s presidential campaign in the battleground state of Florida. From 1999-2001 she worked as a Client Manager and historical adviser at the Public Record Office (now the National Archives) after being awarded a PhD in political history (on the electoral strategy and philosophy of the Liberal Party 1970-1983) from the University of Leeds where she also taught Modern European History and Contemporary International Politics. Contact Ruth at

Joel Blackwell
Joel Blackwell – Senior Researcher
Joel conducts the Society’s continued research into the legislative process, the effectiveness of Parliament in scrutinising and holding the executive to account and the public’s engagement with politics. He is co-author of The Devil is in the Detail: Parliament and Delegated Legislation. Prior to joining the Hansard Society in 2014, Joel was a Political Consultant for Dods Parliamentary Communications and has also worked at the Electoral Commission. He graduated from Bristol University in 2005 with a degree in Politics and Social Policy.
Contact Joel at



Luke Boga MitchellLuke Boga MitchellCommunications & Digital Manager
Luke manages the development and co-ordination of the Society’s digital communications strategy, including the website, social media and e-newsletters. He also manages the Society’s varied programme of public events and supports the implementation of its fund-raising and development plan. Luke joined the Hansard Society in 2010 as an intern on the Study and Scholars Programme having previously interned as a writer for a politics and culture website. He graduated with a BA in Philosophy (2007) and an MA in Social & Political Thought (2009) from the University of Sussex, and a PG Cert in Journalism and Web Development (2013) from Birkbeck College, University of London. Contact Luke at


Peter CatterallPeter Catterall – Hansard Scholars and Research Scholars Programme Lecturer
Dr Catterall has written extensively on British constitutional issues, party politics and the media. Apart from editing the journal National Identities, his current research interests range from the development and operation of British Cabinet committees to the role of the Leader of the Opposition in Westminster systems. Dr Catterall is also International Director for Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities at the University of Westminster.


Lisa GeorgeLisa George – Director, Study and Scholars Programme
Lisa is responsible for the overall and strategic direction of the Society’s undergraduate Hansard Scholars Programme, new programme development and compliance processes.  She joined the Hansard Society in June 2009, prior to which she spent many years working for one of the first study abroad programmes to provide pre-professional academic internships for North American students in London and several European capitals, first as London Programmes Director and later as European Programmes Director. She has also worked for an NGO for which she organised political training programmes and provided in-house editorial support. Lisa received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Government and Speech Communications from the University of Virginia, USA.  She is on the Board of Directors and Deputy Chair of the Association of American Study Abroad Programmes, AASAP UK, and AASAP’s delegate to the QAA Alternative Providers Liaison Forum. Contact Lisa at


portrait2Simon KayeHansard Scholars and Research Scholars Programme Lecturer
Simon Kaye is the Lecturer in Parliament and Politics for the Hansard Scholars Programme, and also teaches at the Department of Political Economy, King’s College London. He has previously taught and studied throughout the University of London, receiving his MSc from the London School of Economics in 2009 and working as a researcher at University College London’s Constitution Unit between 2010 and 2012, as well as occasionally being employed in applied politics. During his doctoral studies at King’s College London, Simon was awarded several competitive fellowships. His wide-ranging research interests include democratic theory and methodological issues in the social sciences, political theory, and history. At present he is writing on the impact of widespread public ignorance on democracies and the extent to which psychological research can play a part in the study of politics.


Ruth NaftalinRuth Naftalin – Finance Director
Ruth is responsible for budget development and financial management at the Society as well as financial governance and charitable compliance matters. Before joining the Hansard Society in 2007 she was Director of Central Services for the Federation of London Youth Clubs. Here, her role included the reorganisation of the federation’s accounting system and responsibility for human resources, secretarial, legal and IT functions. From 1991 she was Finance Manager for Penta Housing Limited and also worked as a self-employed accountant. Ruth is a keen volunteer; she currently sits on the Board of Barnet Community Homes and is Treasurer of Elders Voice in Brent. Contact Ruth at


Thimios TzallasThimios Tzallas – Scholars Programme Manager
Thimios is responsible for the day-to-day management of the Society’s undergraduate Hansard Scholars Programme. He first joined the Hansard Society in April 2013 as a member of the research programme before moving to the Scholars team upon his appointment as Scholars and Finance Coordinator. He took over management of the Scholars Programme in August 2014. Thimios has worked in the UK, Greek and European Parliaments and has considerable experience as a publisher of a historical local newspaper in Greece. He graduated with a BA in History and Politics from Panteion University in Greece and an MA in Politics from Westminster University. Thimios can be contacted at:


Press enquiries

For press enquiries, please contact:

020 7710 6080
020 7710 6077
07779 666 771

Research team

Dr Ruth Fox, Director and Head of Research

Joel Blackwell, Senior Researcher

Scholars Programme dates

Dates for upcoming programmes:

Spring 2016
January 16 - April 23
Fee: £10,250.

Summer 2016
May 21 - July 16
Fee: £6200.

Autumn 2016
September 3 - December 10
Fee: £10,500.

Click here to apply

Site navigation